BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) – Negotiations on the EU economic stimulus package to deal with the corona crisis continue to be extremely difficult. At the EU special summit in Brussels, a meeting of all 27 heads of state and government of the European Union, which was actually scheduled for 12 noon, was postponed indefinitely. It should not start before 4 p.m., diplomats said. The preliminary talks continued. Possible compromise lines would first be tested in a small group.
The issue at the summit is, among other things, the amount of the non-repayable grants. Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron do not want to accept, according to diplomats, that the total amount available for this is less than 400 billion euros.
However, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands and Finland oppose this amount. They would prefer to grant loans and not grants to encourage countries like Italy and Spain to reform more quickly.
The EU member states have been negotiating a billion-dollar economic stimulus package in Brussels since Friday morning to alleviate the economic consequences of the corona pandemic. An agreement on the long-term EU budget must also be reached. In total, it is about 1.8 trillion euros. Actually, the summit should only last two days./aha/DP/nas